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Worst mistakes in an online press release

Worst mistakes in an online press release

Worst mistakes in an online press release


When you prepare a press release, it is important to note that your press release will be competing with hundreds and sometimes thousands of press releases by businesses offering a similar product. Businesses use press releases to herald the launch a new product, announce the winning of a prestigious award or to make known mergers, acquisitions and partnerships.

In order for your press release to catch readers' interest and stand out from the crowd, you must at all costs avoid certain mistakes. These are the kind of mistakes that would create a negative impression of your business that would be difficult to shake off even in the long term.

First major mistake is grammatical errors. When it comes to press releases, grammatical errors are simply unacceptable. Proofread and edit the document before submitting. You might need to do this several times if that is what it will take to ensure the document is perfect. When checking the grammar, take into consideration your intended target market. If your audience is speakers of UK English, then the grammar should be in such English. On the other hand, if it is meant for people in the US, then it should be in US English.

A second major mistake is poor formatting. Paragraphs should be short and there should be at least a single line space between the paragraphs. Large paragraphs look chunky and are difficult to read. Use block paragraphing as this is now considered the standard for professional documentation. However, if you choose to use indented paragraphs, it must be consistent throughout the document. Mixing block and indent does not look professional. The release should neither be too short nor too long anything between 300 and 800 words should be acceptable.

The third error is shallow, poorly researched content. Remember that the press release is ultimately meant to strengthen your brand reputation in the market. Keep the content of the press release rich and to the point. After reading the press release, readers should come out with a clear image of your intended message. As a guideline, answer the 5Ws and a 1H the when, who, what, where, why and how of the release.

A fourth common press release mistake is using the document as a sales pitch. Mainstream media houses and some press release websites will reject any press release is more inclined towards marketing the business and product, than it is informational. The press release should simply be a factual document on a specific subject matter. Steer clear of hype. Words that would signal exaggeration such as amazing' or best' will also put away readers who will consider the release as subjective and not objective.
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